7-Ingredient Superfood Salsa (Easy & Authentic)
Updated: Jul 26
This super easy, delicious salsa goes great with chips, tacos, eggs, omelettes, beans or even a piece of steak, chicken or fish. It's full of immune-boosting vitamins, minerals and disease-fighting nutrients. Grab your blender and get ready to enjoy!
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The Magic of Tomato Season
Although you can get tomatoes in the U.S. year round thanks to greenhouses and our vast agricultural import program, I find these red fruits tastiest when they start rolling into the local farmer's markets come summertime.
If you've read my post on shopping locally, then you'll know what's behind the better taste of locally grown tomatoes.
A rich flavor is representative of nutrient density. This usually happens best when produce is picked in season at peak ripeness... and not weeks beforehand so it can be stored and transported from hundreds of miles away, losing flavor and nutrition as it travels.
Bold flavor also means the tomato was grown in healthy soil which is nature's greatest source of multivitamins. Fertile soil is rich in minerals -- especially trace minerals, and vitamins. If you've ever cut open a dry, pale tomato (and who hasn't these days) the soil may lacking potassium or other essential nutrients. A ruby red tomato that bursts open with deep color and juiciness, is a sign of great health. Not only for the plant, but for you!
If you've ever had joy of eating a ripe tomato straight off the vine, you'll know what I'm talking about. There is no comparison to store bought options.
And if you are like me and crave salsa year round, you can consider learning how to can or ferment this wonderful condiment. I, for one, am planning to stock my larder with some canned and fermented salsas towards the end of summer when local, nutrient-dense tomatoes are cheap and in abundance!
Side note: a million hats off to organic farm leader and real food advocate, Joel Salatin, for opening my eyes to the age-old wisdom of preserving local harvests in his amazing book, Folks, This Ain't Normal. This and many other ancient, common-sense practices about food and life were not on my radar until I read this book -- highly recommended to anyone seeking normalcy!
7 Superfood Ingredients to Boost Your Immunity
This simple homemade salsa is loaded with a host of powerful vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to boost your immune system, nourish your cardiovascular machinery, support your gut health, bones and eyes as well as aid in natural detox. Pretty amazing!
Let's take a peek at the multivitamin mix in this popular condiment:
When tomatoes are heated or cooked, even for a few minutes, they release greater amounts of a magical compound known as lycopene. Lycopene has been shown to support blood vessel health, reduce cancer risk, lower the risk of macular degeneration and support bone health as we age. Bring it on!
Garlic is one of nature's most powerful antibiotic, antiviral, anti-fungal and anti-parasitic therapies. Not only this, but it's supportive of good gut health, brain health and cardiovascular health. And studies have shown formidable effects on cancer cells. What's not to love?
Like their cousin garlic, onions are loaded with potent disease-fighting compounds. Not only this, but they are a powerful source of a flavonoid known as quercetin. Quercetin boasts numerous superpowers including being a natural anti-histamine (hello, allergies and itchies!) along with showing promise for cancer prevention.
Jalapeño or Serrano Chile:
Chiles are an excellent source of vitamin C and also contain a fiery plant compound known as capsaicin. Capsaicin demonstrates numerous health potentials for conditions related to cardiovascular health (including stroke), gut health (even ulcers... yup!), fatty liver and metabolic syndrome. It's powerful natural anti-inflammatory that promotes good circulation!
This magically fragrant herb not only brings freshness to any salsa, but has been used as powerful herbal remedy against many diseases including cancer, diabetes and liver disease. It has also shown amazing protective effects for skin against UV radiation!
Lime is a delicious source of vitamin C and when combined with cooked tomatoes, it works synergistically with lycopene to enhance antioxidant activity and prevent DNA damage to cells. Pretty awesome!
A good quality sea salt is loaded with naturally occurring minerals versus iodized table salt which has been processed and contains additives like sugar and anti-caking agents. No thank you! I use both Jacobsen's Sea Salt from Oregon and Saltverk Flaky Sea Salt from Iceland-- both test ultra-low in heavy metals and microplastics. Yes, they are pricey, but SO worth it to me as we use salt on everything, especially for putting minerals back into our filtered water.
Let's put it all together!
7-Ingredient Superfood Salsa (Easy & Authentic)
Prep: 5-9 minutes Blend: 1 minute Total: 10 minutes Servings: 4-6
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2 large heirloom tomatoes, or 4 roma or regular tomatoes, or a 1 pint basket (~12+) of cherry tomatoes
2-3 whole, peeled garlic cloves
1/2 to 1 small jalapeño or serrano chile pepper (serranos are usually hotter) -- remove veins and seeds carefully if you don't want it too spicy
1/4 medium red or white onion
1/2 bunch of fresh cilantro or 2 cups of roughly chopped cilantro
juice of 1/2 fresh lime
Preheat broiler or set oven to 450 degrees.
Core tomatoes and place them whole or cut in half (depending on size and preference-- if cut in half I set them face up) in a cast iron pan or other high heat baking dish. I prefer all my cooking in cast iron, stainless steel or clear glass as they are typically the least toxic cookware options when it comes to heavy metals and chemicals.
Broil or roast tomatoes on high for 3-6 minutes (depending how hot your oven is). Remove and leave skins on (or take skins off if you prefer, but I'm all for getting the extra fiber and texture). I do not recommend charring or consuming charred parts (of any food) as it may contain carcinogenic compounds. This is why the broiling/roasting time is short in this recipe.
While broiling or roasting the tomatoes, toss all the other ingredients in a high speed blender. When tomatoes are done drop them right on top of everything!
Pulse blend on low for about 5-15 seconds 2-3 times if you want a chunky salsa. Check the texture and pulse blend a few more times if it's not breaking up... but don't over-blend or blend on high unless you want a spicy tomato soup!
Taste and adjust flavors with salt or lime.
Try it with my Best Instant Pot Black Beans
Check out my sure-fire recipe for the creamiest and
Thirsty for more lycopene?
Check out this easy, hydrating recipe for
Let me know if you try out this easy salsa and how you like it! You can post in comments below or tag me in any photos on Instagram @nourishandcherish.ntp!
Arnold, G. (2010). “Lycopene Continues to Show Benefits for Bone Health.”NHRI, www.naturalhealthresearch.org/lycopene-continues-to-show-benefits-for-bone-health/.
Cardinault, Nicolas, et al. “Lycopene but Not Lutein nor Zeaxanthin Decreases in Serum and Lipoproteins in Age-Related Macular Degeneration Patients.”Clinica Chimica Acta, Elsevier, 29 Apr. 2005, www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0009898105001051?via=ihub.
Chu, Y., Raghu, R., Lu, K., Liu, C., Lin, S., Lai, Y., . . . Sheen, L. (2013, July). Autophagy therapeutic potential of garlic in human cancer therapy. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3924985/
Heber & Lu. “Overview of Mechanisms of Action of Lycopene - David Heber, Qing-Yi Lu, 2002.”SAGE Journals, journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/153537020222701013.
Hwang, E., Lee, D., Park, S., Oh, M., & Kim, S. (2014, September). Coriander leaf extract exerts antioxidant activity and protects against UVB-induced photoaging of skin by regulation of procollagen type I and MMP-1 expression. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4152784/
Mathew, B., & Biju, R. (2008, March 1). Neuroprotective effects of garlic a review. Retrieved July 04, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3074326/
McCarty, M., DiNicolantonio, J., & O'Keefe, J. (2015, June 17). Capsaicin may have important potential for promoting vascular and metabolic health. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4477151/
Mozos, I. et al. “Lycopene and Vascular Health.”Frontiers in Pharmacology, Frontiers Media S.A., 23 May 2018, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5974099/.
Riso, P., et al. “Lycopene and Vitamin C Concentrations Increase in Plasma and Lymphocytes after Tomato Intake. Effects on Cellular Antioxidant Protection.”Nature News, Nature Publishing Group, 31 Mar. 2004, www.nature.com/articles/1601974.
Szalay, J. (2017, May 09). Onions: Health Benefits, Health Risks & Nutrition Facts. Retrieved from https://www.livescience.com/45293-onion-nutrition.html
About the Author
Roxie Daggett is a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner (NTP) with a virtual holistic nutrition practice in Sedona, Arizona. Her passions include studying nutritional research pertaining to brain health, gut health, genetics and longevity. When she is not geeking out on nutrition she enjoys cooking, hiking, organic gardening and hanging out with her wonderful husband, and her adorable, energetic son who happens to have Down syndrome. Learn more on her About page and stay in touch by grabbing your FREE BRAIN HEALTH BREAKFAST GUIDE above or below!